Everyone – stop what you’re doing right now and take a moment to stare at this stunningly floral Chuppah in all its glory. As far as Chuppah game goes, this is seriously top notch: we can’t stop gazing at that abundance of cascading flowers – too beautiful for words!
Now that we’ve got that out of our system: Jade and Adam’s Jewish wedding at the achingly rustic-cool Soho Farmhouse was packed with personalised detail. From the fabulous pink and white floral arrangements that adorned the reception to the incredibly sweet and thoughtful favours created by the couple and their families, no stone was left unturned.
We love Jade’s idea of incorporating small, framed photographs of her late grandparents in her bouquet – a wonderfully personal way to honour departed loved ones. We ADORE her personalised Converse (and when we say personalised, these are something else, go and look now now now!). The speeches sweepstake is a fantastic way to keep guests entertained, a late-night greasy spoon van is absurdly clever (pre-empt those hangovers) and the doggy vodka ice luges in the shape of beloved family pets at a vet’s wedding? Bravo.
Oh, and we literally squealed with excitement when we saw the couple had replicated the bottle dance from Fiddler on The Roof – there are not enough adjectives in the world for how enthusiastic we feel about this.
Before we hand over to Jade, one thing she said is really worth highlighting. When it came to makeup, Jade said that she felt like the best version of herself, which is such a beautiful, empowering thing and we just love her for it. Over to Jade for the full story.
How we met
Jade, the bride: Adam and I met through my work. I am a veterinary surgeon and I was his family vet.
An authentic experience at Soho Farmhouse, Oxfordshire
Getting married at 36 years old, I no longer wanted the Scottish castle wedding I had dreamed of at 24. Adam and I knew we wanted something different: more us, less formal, more fun, and so when we saw Soho Farmhouse online we were delighted. It was a new venue at the time and the whole Soho House experience just appealed to us. Even though it was still a work in progress at the time of booking, we loved it and instantly knew that it was the perfect venue for us.
I loved that you left your car at the entrance, the only way to get around was by milk float, bicycle, horse or on foot. It felt like I was in another world and it made me instantly relaxed. The bespoke wellies and bicycles with name tags, the ability to collect your own eggs from the chickens, sitting on hay bales at the Chuppah, the outdoor baths, the endless cowshed shampoo and conditioners in the shower, your own personal farm hand… The list goes on! I wanted something different – I like being a bit different – hence why I have a black engagement ring.
A rustic theme
As our venue was Soho Farmhouse we decided on a rustic theme and this was the inspiration for our invitations and indeed all our stationery, floral arrangements, Chuppah and so on. Our guests sat on hay bales during the ceremony and we even had our initials burned on hay bales and used a bark themed Chuppah with our initials burnt on it too.
Natalie Rolls was my wedding planner at the venue – amazing, caring, professional, efficient, couldn’t do enough, credit to Soho. The staff in general were so polite, warm and friendly and seemed genuinely excited and interested in my wedding which was so refreshing.
Katy Cresner was my additional wedding planner, a genuine stroke of genius! Only realised the magnitude and complexity of trying to organise my Jewish wedding at a fairly new unique venue quite late in the game (four weeks before, I think) in came Katy – organisation and calm followed. Natalie and Katy teamed up and I unloaded all my stress at the gates of Soho Farmhouse and left my wedding in their capable hands. Couldn’t recommend her more.
Our hessian bow invitations
Linda Minde of U-Name-It designed my wedding stationery. She helped me create the invitations I had envisioned in my mind. I knew I wanted my bridesmaids to wear grey so she helped design contemporary invites that complemented our rustic venue – right down to the font and wording layout used at Soho Farmhouse.
Her attention to detail was wonderful and the hessian sourced for the bows on my stationery was perfect. My mum was recommended to her by a friend and she was the most wonderful find. Linda showed a genuine interest in all aspects of my wedding which I guess helped her to understand my personality and what I was about. She was so receptive to all my thoughts and created exactly what I wanted. The merticulous way she boxed and presented all the invites and stationary made everything easier.
Her husband even took her to Soho Farmhouse as a surprise before my wedding – she took the opportunity to buy me a gift from there, which she wrapped so beautifully and I received it the night before my wedding with a personalised card. Such a lovely woman with amazing attention to detail.
Makeup to bring out the best in the bride
My makeup was done by Lorraine Milligan and I loved it. She was warm, calming patient and professional. My mother and my mother in law and all my bridesmaids also had their makeup done and were all delighted with the results.
I felt the best version of myself, which I guess is all you can hope for on your wedding! I just had a makeup lesson with Lorraine as a birthday present and learnt so much.
Ayelet Garson did my hair (and my bridesmaids and my mum). I had ideas of how I wanted my look and Ayelet was patient and was able to create exactly what I wanted. She was attentive, patient and creative – made my mum so happy as she loved her hair on the day as did I and all my bridesmaids. I had such a lovely day getting ready with my favourite people and Ayelet and Lorraine added to it perfectly.
A Sophia Tolli dress
After what seemed like an endless search, I eventually fell in love with a Sophia Tolli dress online. It was not available in any of the bridal shops in London so we had to pay to have it shipped in for me to try on. Thankfully, I loved it. It was a little different, a much fuller dress than I ever imagined I’d wear. It was flattering but fun at the same time.
Family heirloom jewellery
I wore family jewellery of diamond earrings from my mother in law and a diamond bracelet from my husband’s grandmother. I also wore a hair vine from Liberty in Love. I had my wedding band made from my grandma’s ring.
Silver high heels and personalised Converse
I wanted silver shoes and found the ideal pair in Marylebone high street. High heeled, strappy, comfortable (the shop sewed my insoles in so they were discreet) but with a bit of bling. The soles were also blue by chance! I had my something blue but I also chose to have a “someone blue” at my wedding – my friend Laura rocked her blue dress!
I changed after the first dance into a bespoke pair of high Converse trainers. These were made by a family friend and were personalised and covered in bling.
The handsome groom
Adam had his dinner suit made at Cad and The Dandy on Savile Row.
Bridesmaids in grey, versatile dresses
We had six adult bridesmaids, two flower girls, six pageboys and 12 ushers. My adult bridesmaids wore grey versatile dresses which allowed each to wear a different style. This became very important as one of my bridesmaids was nearly eight months pregnant at the wedding. (I discovered that some bridal shops had a fake “baby bump” to help with imagining the look!)
Having been at bridesmaid six times myself, it was really important to me that my friends felt happy in their dresses. My two flower girls wore long white dresses with grey sashes. All the ushers had grey bow ties and grey pocket handkerchiefs. My pageboys wore grey tartan kilts as a nod to my Scottish roots. The kippot for the guests were grey and the wedding party wore silver.
Our wow-factor floral Chuppah
The guests sat on covered hay bales which were in a semi circle. This was important to me as I wanted to see certain faces when I was under the Chuppah. It was made of wood in keeping with our location and our initials were burnt into it.
I personalised our order of service as many of our friends are not Jewish and I wanted to involve everyone as much as possible. The flowers were abundant and amazing. My oldest pageboy carried the rings in a bespoke engraved tree trunk. The two grandmothers sat under the Chuppah and the Rabbi that performed our ceremony had officiated at my husband’s sister’s wedding and when his parents renewed their vows. Charles also officiated at the renewal of Adam’s grandparents vows after 70 years. His link with the Scott family was palpable and very special. Sensation Band played the most amazing Israeli music while sitting on hay bales.
Andy of Main Event Productions provided our birch Chuppah, the aisle runner, stage and lighting. He was keen to visit the venue (Katy Cresner, Andrew my photographer, Jamie Paskin, Andy and I had a road trip!) to ensure he had all the information he needed to do an excellent job. He knew I wanted our initials carved on the Chuppah and offered to do this for us! A complete gentleman and a wonderful addition to my wedding team.
A modern, bright Ketubah
Our Ketubah was extra special as it came from America, was a gift from my brother and family and was a modern bright design. (I found it when looking on your blog!) It is framed and has pride of place in our home. We kept the smashed glass and it is being made into something special for our home. I also had a bespoke “road sign” made directing guests to our wedding.
Sensational music choices
Sensation Band chose and sung beautiful Israeli music during the ceremony. Our first dance was You Are the Best Thing by Ray Lamontagne. We entered the room to Marry You by Bruno Mars. I danced with my dad to Brown Eyed Girl.
An abundance of flowers
Soho Farmhouse did our fabulous flowers with the assistance of another outside florist. We had an abundant and beautiful Chuppah, pedestals, candles, petals, a variety of arrangements around reflecting the rustic theme e.g. a bike with flowers, a ladder with flowers, pots and two by nine feet large blossom trees (supplied by WOW rentals), one of which had the table place cards hanging from it.
The Sperry tent provided by Papakata was awash with high candelabras covered in floral arrangements and vases filled with flowers. For texture, the top table had wood bases, different candles from the other tables (these were either covered in grey cloths or left showing the polished wood) and a variety of high and low arrangements.
All flowers were pink or white: hydrangeas, roses, peonies and thistles (another nod to Scotland!). Thistles also added decor to the Lychee martinis that were served. My flowers girls carried the most wonderful parasols which had been completely covered in pink and white orchids. The flowers meant a lot to my now mother in law Mia as she is very knowledgable on the subject and Soho went out of their way to fulfill our wishes.
Unfortunately, none of my grandparents are alive and I wanted to acknowledge them on the day but privately so I had small framed photographs of them incorporated in my bouquet and so they walked down the aisle with me.
Our fabulously creative photographer…
My mum had always said that she wanted Andrew by Andrew James Photography to photograph my wedding. One meeting and I was sold! He was personable, fun, Scottish (winner for me!), creative and very excited to photograph my wedding at Soho Farmhouse.
We visited together so he could get a feel for the venue and the photographs he took on the day rocked! More importantly, my husband (who does not like being photographed) and I loved the whole experience. Aside from being everywhere with a camera on the day, Andrew was also so attentive to me and helped to keep me laughing. He took over 1000 photos and his creativity was outstanding: we were in a cornfield, a bath, a boathouse with our reflections on the water. He was truly amazing.
We used Gorgeous Films who were so discreet we hardly knew they were there. We are excitedly waiting for our album and video. I am eagerly awaiting my film but found Jo and Gary wonderful to deal with and their unobtrusive style of filming excellent on the day.
A three-tiered coconut cake
Soho Farmhouse made the cake and did the most amazing catering. The service and attention to detail was excellent. The desserts especially were outstanding. We chose coconut for our three-tiered cake and had it decorated in fresh flowers. The top layer was especially made lactose free for my husband.
The food tasting was incredible and we had a hard time choosing – hence having an alternate drop dessert. All the guests were very impressed by the meal and loved the “greasy spoon” afterwards. Some are still talking about the risotto ball canapés!
Creating a party atmosphere
We had the wonderful Sensation Band for the Chuppah and dinner dance. My now brother in law had seen them perform and said they were amazing. We looked at their website and immediately loved the acoustic Chuppah music.
Jason Silver was a pleasure to work with – efficient, professional, happy to coordinate with my Rabbi and my bottle dancers to ensure everything ran smoothly. I felt very comfortable contacting him (quite frequently!) for advice and he was always more than happy to help. On the night, everyone commented on what an amazing party atmosphere there was and that the band were amazing. They really made the night!
We also had the fabulous Diamond Boys who entertained and interacted as the guests exited the ceremony, at the cocktail reception and for part of the dinner. I know first hand how tedious the drinks reception can be so was keen to keep my guests entertained.
I had a “speechstakes” board going round where my guests could bet on the length of the speeches (winner got a bottle of champagne) and the interactive fun (quite handsome!) Diamond Boys mingling and singing to and with my guests. The feedback from everyone was that they loved them so I was really pleased that they were a late addition to my wedding (booking confirmed the day before!! One benefit of a Thursday wedding!)
At the end of the wedding a “greasy spoon” van parked outside serving midnight munchies and there was an after party till the very early hours. Adam and I went to bed about 5.30 am – as the venue was ours the bar stayed open until the last guest went to bed!
Fiddler on The Roof bottle dancers
I had always wanted Fiddler on The Roof bottle dancers at my wedding and it took a lot of searching but I finally found Off The Roof to perform and introduce our Israeli dancing. I had seen a Rabbi at my friend’s wedding years before place a bottle on his head during the Israeli dancing and loved it, so had always been determined to have this at my wedding. Much more difficult to source than I thought.
Being ex Fiddler on the Roof performers, they were perfect. They came in from different directions in the tent with bottles on their heads and surprised the guests. I personally loved it and thought it was a unique was to introduce the Israeli dancing.
A vintage photo booth with Scottish props
We had a vintage photo booth (Scottish props!) and guest book, marshmallows to toast round the firepit outside and sparklers to complete the night. Lee from Vintagebooth-me was also amazing. I wanted a photo booth that would complement the décor at Soho and this company fitted in perfectly. I got a wonderful guestbook as a result and Lee sent me a memory stick of any photos I had missed.
Two dog ice vodka luges
I contacted Alan of Ice Creations as I wanted to surprise Adam by somehow including our dogs (a Labrador and Husky) in our wedding (we could have brought them but didn’t think fair on them). He was so lovely and requested close up photos of my boys so as to replicate them as best he could. The dog ice vodka luges were a great addition to my wedding – personal to us and also a nod to my veterinary career!
Jamie Paskin was my toastmaster – so lovely. He was recommended by Katy and another wonderful addition to my team. More current, young “toastmasting” which complemented Soho Farmhouse. Über helpful and caring.
I am originally from Scotland and my married name went from Statt to Scott. The thistles and kilts acknowledged my roots but so did the favours.
We had home made Scottish tablet (hand made lovingly by my aunt) in hessian bags for the ladies and miniature Scottish whisky bottles with a picture of Soho Farmhouse on them for the men. Each had a tag that read “You can take the girl out of Scotland but you can’t take “Scott” Land out of the girl”.
All guests found a personalised note from us on checking into their cabin and a personalised “Do Not Disturb” sign on each of their cabin doors after the wedding.
I made individual personalised baskets for all my bridesmaids in recognition of our friendship. The night before the wedding, I gave gifts to the bridal party as I wanted to share their reaction. I also made a book for Adam with a card that I had delivered to his cabin on our wedding day.
A fun children’s table
I made the childrens’ table fun by including wedding Lego, cameras with an activity sheet of photos to take, plenty of sweets and games like noughts and crosses or hangman.
Including family in our celebration
Toasts were made by our uncles. Wherever and whenever, we tried to include as many family, friends or guests in our celebrations. The same family friend who designed my Converse also made the most amazing bespoke hoops that twelve of my friends held as we made our entrance.
Advice to brides and grooms currently planning their wedding
I thoroughly enjoyed personalising my wedding and adding final touches so would advise that you keep hold of your personalities and try and add them to your day.
I would thoroughly recommend having a wedding planner and a toastmaster – especially for a large Jewish wedding.
I loved working with every single person that was involved in creating my wedding and that was what helped make my wedding for me. I was confident in their talents and the positive energy from everyone helped to create the warmest atmosphere. Please don’t underestimate how important this is as they all help to create your day and if you get on with all of them it makes such a difference. I genuinely feel so lucky with everyone that was involved as their commitment and warmth helped make my wedding.
Start writing your thank you cards as you get presents – so much easier!
Savour the getting ready with your girls part – it was the best morning ever – hanging out with all my favourite people was priceless!
Jade & Adam’s little white wedding book
Photographer – Andrew James Photography
Videographer – Gorgeous Films
Wedding planner – Katy Cresner
Venue and flowers – Soho Farmhouse
Bride’s dress – Sophia Tolli
Bride’s shoes – Converse
Bride’s accessories – Liberty in Love
Groom’s attire – Cad and The Dandy
Hair – Ayelet Garson
Make-up – Lorraine Milligan
Chuppah – Main Event Productions
Bands – Sensation Band and Diamond Boys
Stationery – U-Name-It
Photobooth – Vintagebooth-me
Blossom trees – WOW rentals
Sperry tent – Papakata
Dog ice vodka luges – Ice Creations
Children’ table fun – Lego
Toastmaster – Jamie Paskin